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tv   Nightline  ABC  July 6, 2011 11:35pm-12:00am PDT

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tonight on "nightline," a juror speaks. a day after finding casey anthony not guilty juror number three explains the verdict to "nightline" in an exclusive interview. >> beyond a reasonable doubt is like swiss cheese. there's holes everywhere. >> she takes us inside the deliberation room and the dramatic twist that led to the acquittal. how he won. barbara walters sits down with defense attorney jose baez foror his take on thevictory. >> caylee would never have wanted her mother to suffer this way. and caylee certainly would never have wanand her mother to die. and, justice served? many remain convinced that casey anthony had a hand in her daughter's death. so, did the system work in this case? a special edition of "nightline"
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starts right now. >> announcer: from the global resources of abc news with cynthia mcfadden and bill weir in new york city, and and terry moran in orlando, florida, this is "nightline," july 6th, 2011. >> good evening, i'm terry moran with a special edition of "nightline" here in orlando, florida, where a little more than 24 hours ago, casey anthony was found not guilty of murdering her young daughter caylee. and we want to start right away here with a new angle on this story, just hours ago. one of the jurors in this trial, jennifer ford, a 32-year-old nurse in training the only juror to have spoken to the media so far, sat down with me for an extensive, scloouch exclusive interview to shed light on what happened inside that deliberation room. here's what she told me. why did you and the other jurors acquit casey anthony of murdering her daughter? >> there wasn't enough evidence
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there wasn't anything strong enough to say -- i don't think anyone in america could tell us exactly how she died. if you put even just the 12 jurors in one room with a piece of paper, write down how caylee died, nobody knows. >> reporter: so it's cause of death that was a problem? >> how can you punish someone for something if you donon know what they did? >> reporter: the prosecution wasn't able to give you a solid enough picture of how -- >> do you knee that picture? i have no idea. they didn't even paint a picture for me to consider. >> reporter: you think that might have been an accident? you believe the defense on that? >> i'm not saying that. i'm saying it's a lot easier to get to that conclusion. i can make that happen. but the chloroform i have n n idea. i don't know where i'm at. >> reporter: when you all went to deliberate this case were you unanimous from the start? >> no. oh, no. >> reporter: really? >> there were a lot of conflicting ideas and some people were like you know i like she did but there's not
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enough to substantiate. others were like no they have nothing for me to even have any idea what happened. >> reporter: there have been people who said you only deliberated 10 or 11 hours and that spokes you weren't serious. >> that's speculation and, you know what, speculation is not fact. we had a lot of discussions. we started to look through stuff but none of it -- how did she die? if you're going to charge someone with murder don't you know how they killed someone or have where, when, why, how? those are important questions, they were not answered. >> reporter: that gets to casey. >> right. >> reporter: 31 days. 31 days that she does not report the death or disappearance of her daughter. and she parties. >> right. >> reporter: and people say that's evidence that she is a killer. >> it looks very bad. the behavior is very bad. but bad behavior is not enough to prove a crime. >> reporter: did you believe the defense accusation that this was a family that had incest in it? that casey had been molested by
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her father or brother? >> i have nothing to substantiate that. >> reporter: that played no role ininour deliberations? no. if you didn't prove it -- no that's not a factor. >> reporter: what did you make of george anthony's testimony? >> he did not -- he did not help the state's case. >> reporter: why? >> because he was clearly dishonest. >> reporter: he was dishonest? >> yes. >> reporter: how? >> well, he was evasive, number one. his story seemed to change depends on like they said initially he was on the defense's side, so he would, you know fight with mr. ashton, not give strtrght answers. but then he switched to the prosecution side and now he won't give the defense straight answers. >> reporter: i want to get back to casey, because she's been the focus of so much attention. >> right. it was her daughter s so -- >> reporter: casey lies. >> yes she does. >> reporter: and lies again. and then she goes out and lives the high life while her daughter is dead. >> right. >> reporter: people say that is evidence that this person was capable of killing that child.
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>> even if that's evidence that she is capable, it doesn't show that she did do it. do i think she's completely innocent? i mean, i have -- i don't have the evidence to say one way or the other. i'm not going to accuse her of killing. i have no idea. >> reporter: if it was an accident in the pool or wherever, how did the child wind up in the swamp months later, rotting away? >> deny it. get rid of it. you don't look at it it's gone. >> reporter: that's what the prosecution said. it was -- >> covering up something. it's not proving it's a murder. either an accident or -- nobody knows what it is. >> reporter: i'm going to press you on this. >> go for it. >> reporter: duct tape on a baby in a bag rotting in the woods. most people look at that, they put two and two together, they say that's a murder. >> well, in our country, unfortunately, we have to prove it. we can't just say, yeah smells bad, looks bad, i get that. but it's someone else's life and if i'm wrong, and i kill someone
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else, i can't live with that. >> reporter: how emotional was it to be a juror in this case? >> i mean, there were quite a few people when we got back aftetethe verdict was read we were in tears. >> reporter: why were you crying after you handed down a not guilty verdict on murder? >> not guilty doesn't mean innocent. it doesn't mean innocent. >> reporter: how do you feel about that? that you may have let a woman who murdered her own daughter walk off that charge? >> it doesn't feel good. it was a horrible decision to have to make. but i had to do it based on the law. >> reporter: how much did the fact that this was a death penalty case weigh on you in the course of the trial and in your deliberations? >> it weighs heavily. it's pretty -- it's the ultimate like it's as big as you can get. someone elsese life in your hands. so, it's -- if they want to charge and they want me to take someone's life, they have to prove it.
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you have to prove it or else i'm a murderer, too, and i'm not any better. >> a juror speaks. well, just ahead, our own barbara walters interviews casey anthony's defense attorney jose baez. does he really believe in her innocence? we were selected to go work on a top secret project. it was a challenge that nobody had undertaken before. and we didn't know whether we could do it. when kennedy announced we're going to go to the moon that was a thrilling proposition. they said, if you could start a computer over from scratch, what would you do? i thought, wow, this could really change things. if you have time for a story, i'll tell you why.
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n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n >> announcer: this special edition of "nightline" continues from orlando, florida, with terry moran. >> welcome back. and we continue now with another abc news exclusive, this one with casey anthony's detention attorney, jose baez the man who saved casey anthony's life. and we're joined now by barbara walters who today interviewed baez in his first sitdown interview since the jury rendered their verdict.
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>> reporter: jose baez is probably as close to casey anthony as anyone is today. of course, he believes that his client is innocent. and, the juror agreed that she did not murder her baby finding her not guilty of that most serious charge in just 11 hours of deliberation. that belief however, was not shared by most of the people watching the verdict outside the courthouse. >> as to the charge of first degree murder we the jury find the defendant not guilty. aggravated child abuse, not guilty. aggravated manslaughter of a child, not guilty. so say we all. >> reporter: the defendant casey anthony, was crying as the verdict was read hugging her defense team including this man, jose baez. >> no evidence, no dna, no hairs. >> reporter: known to be bombastic, controversial and some said inexperienced. he has only been practicing law for five years. so, it seemed even more unlikely that baez would be able to keep
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his client from the death penalty. but he did. you have had your ups and downs professionally. it took you awhile to become a lawyer and now you are possibly the most talked about attorney, lawyer, in the country. did you realize the kind of impact this would haveve on your life? >> not really because i think it's still too soon and a lot of it is just slowly starting to sink in. >> reporter: not guilty. not guilty. not guilty. what did you think, how did you feel? >> really, the happiest moment came after the first not guilty because i knew i had saved her life. and that was reallyy biggest fear and i -- once i got through that, i grabbed casey's hand and i held it. >> reporter: in your heart of hearts, did you think that she would be found not guilty? >> i thought for a very long time that we had an outstanding chance of getting her an acquittal. but it was surrounded with a lot of misconceptions. >> reporter: what kind of
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misconceptions? >> well, i think the number one fact that she was a bad mother. >> reporter: you think she was a good mother? >> i think that came out in the trial completely. would you say she was a good mother? >> yes, i would. >> casey and caylee had a very special bond. >> reporter: >> i think that every single witness who took the stand testified that she was an excellent mother. >> reporter: what many people found shocking was that caylee was missing for 31 days and her absence went unreported until casey's mother cindy anthony, called 911 and handed the phone to her daughter. >> and you last saw her a month ago? >> 31 days. 31 days. >> why are you calling now? why didn't you call 31 days ago? >> i've been looking for her and have gone through other resources to try to find her. which was stupid. >> reporter: does a good mother wait 30 days before reporting a child missing?
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>> that whole aspect of the casey anthony case is really just a myth. she -- it was never disputed that she passed on july 16th 2008, by both sides. that 31 daysas just been kept out there, i think, a lot, through various media reports and people just can't get that out of their mind. the actions that she took were obviously not things that anyonee can condone. however, this was not a murder case. it never was. and the jury saw that and thankfully our system worked. >> reporter: describe casey anthony. you know her now, probably better than anyone else. >> i think casey is an extremely intelligent intelligent, kind, warm-hearted individual. she's very misunderstood by many people. >> reporter: what do people misunderstoodmis
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misunderstand about casey? >> they think she's a monster, a cold-hearted killer. and nothing could be further from the truth. >> reporter: the trial began with baez making surprising revelations.s. >> caylee anthony died on june 16th when she drowned in the family swimming pool. >> reporter: and this one. >> when casey was 8 years old, her father came into her room and began to touch her inappropriately. >> reporter: you said that casey anthony had been quote, trained to lie by surviving years of sexual abuse by her father. you never were able to present evidence of that. >> all i can say about that is that every statement made was done with a good faith basis. >> reporter: you know, there is so much antagonism towards her. the feeling is that even though she was acquitted that she was, that she was very callous, how could she go out dancing and partying and -- what do you say
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about that? >> i think what we proved in court was that people grieve in many different ways and people respond to trauma in various ways. >> reporter: tomorrow, casey anthony will be sentenced. she may be released in the near future. but she faces a reunion with a family devastated by her trial because her defense called both her parents liars. you saved casey anthony's life. did she thank you? >> absolutely. >> the defense from barbara walters there. next up in this special edition of "nitline," we may never know how caylee anthony died. but in the face of that we can still ask, did the justice system work? i'm just a piece of dust living at the corner of j and k spending too many nights alone at the spacebar. will love ever find me? ♪ ♪ oh yes!
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the advantage of a jury system is that jurors aren't experts. the idea is they are ordinary citizens who can be trusted to give their peers a fair shake. but what happens when the jury inside the courthouse doesn't agree with the crowd outside? here's abc's john donvan. >> as to count one. >> reporter: so, these two words -- >> not guilty. >> reporter: repeated twice more by the jury. >> not guilty. not guilty. >> reporter: they gave us an outcome, but not an answer to the most basic question -- how did this little girl die? and because we don't know and won't know we're still going to argue, either a, she did it and the system failed in that courtroom, or b, she did not do it, and the system worked spectacularly well. first, scenario a, where she did it. well, the crowd always knew that. knew what the jurors somehow got wrong. which means in this world, a killer got away with murder.
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an indication that maybe it's the system that's wrong. >> how did she die? >> reporter: one where attorneys can distort reality to make the most basic facts sound confusing. one where -- >> you may swear the jury. >> reporter: they pick the ries based on advice they get from well-paid consultants whose function is to guess who will go easy on a defendant. maybe scenario a, the, she got away with it scenario tells us trials by jury are a crazy idea. ordinary people pull into something so over their hes that can get it wrong, to look at that killer standing there and to say, not guilty? but then there is scenario b, and, is it just possible that the system worked? that she did not do it? because consider what the individual pieces of evidence really said for sure. for sure nothing. photos showing casey partying all those weeks her daughter was
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missing, yes they look bad, but that's how circumstantial evidence works. it can look a certain way, but by itself it proves nothing. partying is not murdering. lying, and she did a lot of that, lying is not murdering. the sidewalk jury maybe its rotating membership in some ways did know more than the actual jury. how certain issues were worked out while the jury was out of the room. someththg else the actual jury never saw -- >> how with a straight face -- >> this. the endless spin that called her guilty from the start. >> neck breaking and head injuries. >> reporter: but only the actual jury saw what the evidence looked like after it had been filtered by the judge to be fair and legal and allowable, all for reasons long established in law. and what it felt like to be weighing a human life in this death penalty case. none of the rest of us had that perspective. >> reporter: four words. beyond a reasonable doubt. they define the system we have in place. and perhaps not guilty simply
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means that these jurors did their job. they listened through these many weeks more closely than any of us and what the prosecution put in front of them, it just was not enough. whether she killed caylee whetetr someone else did, if caylee died in an accident we're almost certainly never going to know. a fact we may just need to get used to, like the facts too, that courtroom trials at times will not satisfy the public's appetite for a certain verdict. >> no j jtice today. >> reporter: but really that's not what trials are there for. i'm john donvan for "nightline" in washington. >> the meaning of trials there. we want to thank you for watching tonight. we hope you check in for "good rning america" when juror number three jennifer ford will be live from orlando. and more of barbara walters' exclusive interview with jose baez. join the conversation that is already going on online. tweet us at "nightline." i'm terry moran.

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